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More subpoenas ahead of Thursday's preliminary hearing in Will Smith shooting case

Left to right: Ceravolo, Thomas, Smith (Source: Facebook) Left to right: Ceravolo, Thomas, Smith (Source: Facebook)
NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) -

Attorneys representing the man accused of killing former Saints player Will Smith, filed more subpoenas ahead of Thursday’s preliminary hearing. Eight more people are subpoenaed to testify.

“I think it’s important for the magistrate to hear the facts that are alleged against Mr. Hayes,” Jay Daniels said.

All of them are members of the New Orleans Police Department or EMS. The detective who requested the arrest warrant for Hayes is also subpoenaed.

Previous subpoenas included former Saints player Pierre Thomas and reserve NOPD officer William Ceravolo, both of whom dined with Smith on the night of the shooting.

“I think any time you have an opportunity to have a preliminary hearing, to have the opportunity to examine the evidence against a client is important,” Daniels said.

During the preliminary hearing, the prosecution will have to put up enough evidence to prove that there’s probably cause to hold the suspect before trial. The hearing, though, likely won’t happen if a grand jury indicts Hayes before it can begin.

“The D.A. never wants a preliminary hearing to take place, especially on a case that has to go before a grand jury, and by law this case does because it’s a second-degree murder arrest. They met once, I’m going to assume they’ll meet again Thursday morning, and it’s going to be a race to the court house,” said FOX 8 legal analyst Joe Raspanti.

The high-profile shooting has already gained national attention, and Hayes’ attorney and the Smith family attorney have given very different versions of what happened on April 9.

“Not only did my client feel threatened, but citizens that were out there in that block felt threatened, as well,” said Hayes attorney John Fuller.

“I’m aware of nothing Will Smith did that would cause this killer to be afraid for his life,” said Smith family attorney Peter Thomson.

Raspanti said witnesses and evidence presented to the court will be what matters in the end.

“Nothing any of those lawyers say - including this lawyer - means anything when it comes down to the guilt or the innocence of the man charged with this crime,” Raspanti said.

The hearing is set to begin Thursday at 10 a.m.

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    New Orleans Saints defensive end Will Smith (91) celebrates after pressuring Indianapolis Colts quarterback Curtis Painter on Oct. 23, 2011. (AP Photo/Jonathan Bachman)New Orleans Saints defensive end Will Smith (91) celebrates after pressuring Indianapolis Colts quarterback Curtis Painter on Oct. 23, 2011. (AP Photo/Jonathan Bachman)

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